It’s a tragic loss for the Horseheads community, but more so for the family of Christopher Truax jr.
He was a 21-year-old Marine and stationed at the Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar.
The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department told us he died from a gunshot wound just outside of san Diego late Thursday evening.
By the time the news reached the Twin Tiers, people who met Chris such as Rodney Strange were in disbelief, in shock this happened.
He met Chris four years ago at the Arnot Mall at a Salvation Army Bell Ceremony.
“Chris was at the mall, he had just gotten done with boot camp and he was at the mall waiting for his assignment to be deployed,” Strange, a Chemung County Legislator, said. “The impression he left on his community and his hometown will certainly go on for a long time.”
He did not know Chris personally, but was friends with him on Facebook. Strange also followed his high school sporting career.
Chris was a wrestler in his senior year, a sectional placer. Former wrestling coach Eric Wilson remembers Chris as a man who did more than what was expected. he looked for a challenge, especially as he was getting ready for the Marine Corps.
“I could see all the quality characteristics in him for that,” Wilson said. “He was a team leader, he had a lot of good work ethic, he never gave up and he was a true competitor.”
Wilson, a former Marine himself, helped inspired Chris to enlist.
Alexia Truax, the wife of Christopher Truax Jr., in a statement said:
“He loved his job he loved protecting people and his loved ones he took his job so seriously and had such a passion for the marines. His dream was always to become a drill instructor he told me since the day we first started talking about his dream to become a drill instructor he would even go to the area where they where located and just admire them and ask drill instructors for advice.”
She continued to say, “my husband was an incredible husband father man marine son and friend. He always put his family first before himself. Christopher, you were a remarkable man, lover and father you were my companion my love and friend, I love you forever I will like you for always as long as I’m living my baby you’ll be. To the person who molded me and chose me to be his women. My heart hurts so much and it kills me to know I will never be able to hear your voice again.. I’m so speechless.. I love you with all my heart Coco puff and know I will be praying for you each and everyday just how I always have been you will forever be my lover and my rock. Rest easy my love, baby Chris and I love you.. you will be in my heart in my thoughts and in my life always and forever. For now I can’t wait to see you again..”
Chris also leaves behind a 1-year-old son. A fundraising campaign has been launched to help start a trust fund for baby Chris, for when he eventually heads off to college and beyond. You can donate here.